In this article, the researcher was looking for a definition of the concept of ‘empowerment’ and how it was embedded in youth development programs that attempt to raise the self-esteem of marginalized young people and empower them to lead productive lives. Issues facing young people were identified as limited access to education and inadequate employment opportunities that frequently lead to crime, violence, substance abuse and high-risk behaviour. In addition to reviewing relevant literature, a case study was made of The Voice Incorporated organization. This organization was established by students at the University of Papua New Guinea (UPNG) as a way for students to look within themselves to discover their unique personalities and unleash the gifts and potential that lies dormant within them. While the term ‘empowerment’ was not used in formulation of The Voice programs, this research highlights ‘empowerment’ as their core function.